James (Jim) David Loushin, 76, of Babbitt dies

James (Jim) David Loushin, 76, of Babbitt went to his heavenly home Friday, April 18, 2014 at Carefree Living Memory Care in Babbitt.
Jim was born and raised in Ely, delivered papers and worked for the Standard gas station. Following graduation, he worked in Pioneer Mine and served in the US Army in Heidelberg, Germany. Upon his return, he worked for many years as a mechanic for Reserve Mining Company, Aysta Dairy and LTV.
Jim married Jean (Schmid) in Tower in 1963. They made their home in Babbitt where they raised their six children.
Jim had a strong trust in the Lord and was a faithful member of Lutheran Church of the Good Shepherd for nearly 50 years.


Amelia J. Omerza, 69, of Ely, dies

Amelia J. Omerza, 69, of Ely,passed away on Saturday, April 19, 2014 at Miller-Dwan Hospital in Duluth. Family arrangements have been entrusted to Kerntz Funeral Home of Ely.


Lyman Curtis Childers, 88, of Ely dies

Lyman Curtis Childers, a.k.a. Pete Zebich, 88, beloved husband, father, grandfather, and great grandfather.After a 6 year battle with pulmonary fibrosis, Lyman passed away peacefully at home on Monday, April 14, 2014, with his family around him.  
Lyman was born in Pillager, Minnesota. He was in the class of 1943 at Ely Memorial High School.  In 1942, he enlisted in the Navy and served in the Seabees in the South Pacific during WWII.  He attended junior college before and after his years in the service.
Lyman’s first job was as a gandy dancer on the railroad for Henry Nickolson.  After returning from WWII, he was the very first employee at Bill Rom’s Canoe Country Outfitters.  Throughout his years in Ely, Lyman worked as a surveyor, fishing guide, at the Ely Miner, and at Reserve Mining Company.


Richard Scott Freeman, 59, of Ely, dies

Richard Scott Freeman, 59, of Ely, passed away on Monday, April 14, 2014 at his home. He was born January 15, 1955 in Wichita Falls, Texas to John Clark and Jean Levorsen Freeman. He graduated from Rider High School in Wichita Falls in 1973 where he was a varsity tennis player and won the State High School Doubles Championship his senior year.  He went to college at the University of Texas in Austin where he was a member of the Beta Theta Pi Fraternity and majored in Petroleum land Management. Following graduation in 1977 he worked as an Oil & Gas Landman in Houston and South Texas while attending night school at South Texas School of Law in Houston and later became a member of the Texas State Bar specializing in oil and gas. In 1989 Dick moved from Houston to Ely, where his great grandparents had emigrated in the 1880s and where the family owned property on Burntside lake, He married Monica Boudreaux in Ely on June 9, 1990 and had two sons: Michael and Jeremy.


Gunilla M. (Johnson) Hautala, 90, dies

Gunilla M. (Johnson) Hautala, 90, of Virginia, died Saturday, April 12, 2014 at the St. Michael’s Health and Rehabilitation Center.   Funeral services will be held Thursday, April 17, 2014 at Range Funeral Home in Virginia at 1:00 p.m. with visitation one hour prior. Pastor Donald Norr will officiate. Interment will be at Greenwood Cemetery.  Arrangements are with Range Funeral Home in Virginia. To sign the online guest book or to send condolences, please visit
Gunilla was born in Ely on January 30, 1924 to Victor and Sophia Johnson.  On December 6, 1941, she was united in marriage to Ernest Hautala.  They lived in Hutter from 1956 before moving back to Virginia in 1984.  She work at VRMC in her earlier years and also volunteered for various senior programs.  


Robert S. Merhar, 98, dies

Robert S. Merhar, 98, passed away peacefully Wed., April 9, 2014 at the Kinnic Nursing Home facility in River Falls, WI. At the request of the deceased there are to be no services or viewing.
His remains will be cremated and his ashes interred in his son, Robert Brian Merhar’s family plot.
Robert was born and raised in Ely. His father, a miner, died when he was 10 years old, leaving his mother Anna with three children, aged 10, 8 and 6 years old with no source of income or assets except for their home in Ely.
Robert was a graduate of Ely Jr. College and graduated from the University of Minnesota with a degree in business administration and accounting and was then the third person from Ely to attain a college degree. His tuition, room and board were paid for from the jobs he held while attending classes.


Donna M. Hess, 81, of Embarrass, dies

Donna M. Hess, 81, of Embarrass, died on Saturday, April 5, 2014, at her home.
She was born on Nov. 10, 1932, in Peever, S.D.
Donna married David L. Hess on April 18, 1953, in Webster, S.D., and they had been Embarrass residents since 1955.
She is survived by her husband of almost 61 years, David Hess of Embarrass; son, Daniel Hess of Pike Township; three granddaughters, Nicole Hess of Chisholm, Tiana Hess of Wadena and Naomi Hess of Virginia; three great-grandchildren; brother, Bud Rustand of Montevideo, Minn.; three sisters, Wilma Szabo of Woodbridge, Va., Arvilla Schaub of Durham, N.H., and Illa Matheson of Oklahoma City, Okla.; special friends, Leta Dolph of Embarrass, Harold Mastin and family, and Herb Young and family; special person, Paula Lowe; and adopted grandchildren by heart, Heather Mesa and Holly Lowe.


Denise J. (Melovasich) Carey, 55, dies

Denise J. (Melovasich) Carey, 55 – Beloved Wife, Mother and Grandmother.
Denise passed away on April 7, 2014 in Eagan, Minnesota at the age of 55. She was born in Ely, Minnesota. Preceded in death by father, John D. Melovasich.
Survived by husband, David Carey; daughter, Katie Carey (Tony) Lochner; son, Andy Carey (Denise); grandsons: Bennett, Brighton and Cooper Lochner and Landon Carey; mother, Violet Melovasich; sisters: Cheryl Klun, Bonnie Orak and Lynne Vesel; other relatives and friends. A Memorial Service was held on Friday, April 11, 2014.
Klecatsky Eagan Chapel


Laverne L. Marolt, 91, of Ely, dies

Laverne L. Marolt, 91, of Ely, passed away at the Boundary Waters Care Center in Ely on Monday, March 31, 2014. Funeral services will be held on Saturday, April 5, 2014 at 11:00 A.M. at First Lutheran Church with visitation being held one hour prior to the service at the church. Family arrangements have been entrusted to Kerntz Funeral Home of Ely.


Robert Eugene Sharp, 94, of Ely, dies

Robert Eugene Sharp, 94, went home to be with his Lord and Savior on Saturday, March 29, 2014 at the Boundary Waters Care Center in Ely. He was born on Oct. 23, 1919 to Sam and Chloe Sharp in Nappanee, IN.
He proudly served in WWII as an Army sargeant. He came to Minnesota and was a lab and x-ray tech for Dr.Snyker at the Winton Hospital for four years. In 1955 the family moved to Duluth where he worked for the St Louis County Health Dept as a Sanitarian for 12 years and then transferred to Ely until his retirement in 1982.
Besides his love for God and his family, his greatest joy was fishing, hunting and berry picking which he did into his 90s. His ability to express his loves was evident through the many poems he wrote.


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